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Auction: 30th Camera Auction 18.-19 November 2016
was auctioned on: 18 November 2016
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Leitz 'Barnack' Kamera

Opening: €1,800 - €2,000
ca. US$1,943 - US$2,159
Price realised:  €2,880
ca. US$3,110
Lot number 1, Views: 76

The very first brochure of the new Leitz camera from 1924, one year before the official delivery of the Leica, then under the name BARNACK-KAMERA. Extremely rare. Literature Hans-Günter Kisselbach (ed.), Barnacks Erste Leica, 2008, p. 47. When Oskar Barnack completed the first model of his photo-camera for cine film in March 1914, he called it 'Lilliputkamera', since it was much smaller than the plate cameras available at that time. Barnack did not give a special name to the improved sample from 1920. The cameras of the first trial series from 1923 (0-Series) only had numbers (101 - 125). In the next series, made in 1924 and bearing the numbers 126 to 129, the time-setting mechanism was covered by a cap. This cap was engraved 'Ernst Leitz Wetzlar', but there was no name for the new camera yet. The department constructing the camera was called 'Barnack Department'; perhaps that is why the first printed matter to introduce the camera simply called it the 'Barnack Kamera'. Upon realisation that Barnack was not a well-known name, those responsible experimented with contracting the first two syllables of the decisive words: LECA - Leitz Camera. But Krauss had already brought out the 'Le Eka' in France. The 'LECA' labels were covered with 'LEICA' ones. And it was under this name that Barnack's camera was announced in the magazine Photofreund in mid-February 1925. This first leaflet is already very cleverly designed. Folded twice, the cover of the closed leaflet says LEITZ 'Barnack Kamera' on the left in red ink, and 'Ein neuer Typ (A new type)' on the right. The reader's curiosity about this novelty is aroused, and opening the leaflet, one reads 'The ideal camera for the amateur, reporter, tourist, scientific explorer'. The future referred to there is now the past, but it has shown that this was a very truthful description.

Informations about the auction
Auction house: WestLicht Photographica Auction
Title: 30th Camera Auction 18.-19 November 2016
Date of the auction: 18 Nov 2016 - 19 Nov 2016
Address: WestLicht Photographica Auction
Westbahnstraße 40
1070 Wien
[email protected] · +43 (0)1 5235659 · +43 (0)1 523565988